Decoding a Candidate’s Quality Through an Interview

An interview is good for getting to know a candidate. But how do you gain the insights you need to make the best hiring decision? Here are a few questions to ask that will help you dig deeper and find the information you need.

Tell Me About a Success You Had Using X Skill

Most candidates list various skills on their resumes. But a simple list doesn’t tell you anything about how proficient they actually are. Asking them to explain a time when they successfully used a specific skill gives you a lot more detail. Ask this one early during the interview, since it’s also a great jumping-off point for further questions.

What Is One of the Biggest Challenges You’ve Overcome in Your Career?

Self-awareness and self-improvement are almost impossible to teach. But they’re absolutely essential job skills. Today’s employers need workers who are flexible, adaptable, and able to overcome adversity. This question helps you get a better understanding of how well a candidate will rise to these challenges.

Describe Your Favorite and Least Favorite Supervisors

This is a non-threatening way to ask about the candidate’s preferred management style. Cultural fit is extremely important in a successful hire. A candidate who prefers a very hands-off manager will feel stifled under a Type A leader. And one who needs a lot of direction can’t thrive under someone with a “sink or swim” approach.

How Did You Get to Where You Are Professionally Today?

Asking this question during an interview gives the candidate an open-ended opportunity to describe their career journey. It can fill in a lot of the blanks for you, especially if the person has changed careers or wants to do so now. And what they choose to focus on can help you assess their values and priorities.

Do You Have Any Questions for Me?

This question lets you gauge the person’s level of preparedness for the interview. Did they take the time to research the company or the position? Do they understand what your organization does and how it fits into the competitive landscape? The questions they ask don’t have to be particularly deep, but they should show that the candidate is interested in this specific role.

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For nearly 30 years, Cardinal Staffing has been matching companies with candidates across Ohio and Michigan. We specialize in light industrial, administrative, and professional roles, and we know where to find the local talent you need. Learn more about the services we offer or request an employee today!